Can the Immigrant Speak?

Since I have started my reading challenges for the year, I have branched out in the books I read. I am currently reading the book We Don’t Need Another Wave and it definitely is on my top ten books for this year. It has great essays from people I wish I knew personally, and it got me thinking.

We can’t vote patriarchy out of office because patriarchy doesn’t hold office – Joshua Russell

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As immigrants, we usually don’t have a lot of rights. Depending on our status, we may not have a right to vote, to make political contributions, to work or to call this place a home. Now the big question is do we have the right to free speech? Believe it or not, this basic fundamental right is not even guaranteed. There’s a lot of debate about how much freedom we really have.

Before I go ahead, let me put out a disclaimer: this post is not a political statement. I am not endorsing anyone holding office or otherwise. This post is about social issues and problems.

Now why do I need to make a disclaimer as such? Am I not interested in sharing my views? Do I not want to be the change I want to see? If anything, We Don’t Need Another Wave has been a call to action for me. I have talked about patriarchy, I am a self-identified feminist, I have debates with my friends and spread awareness, but is that action enough to fight patriarchy and hate?

As an immigrant, I often feel I have a lot to lose and that there is no safe space to actually act. We need a safe space for immigrants and the oppressed to speak out and have opinions and to be a part of this change we all want to see.  We also need support from those already fighting the good fight. I urge you all to open up dialogues with your friends and family members, talk to those around you and make an effort to find out the troubles we as immigrants and brown people face everyday.

For those of you that are like me and want to help, but cannot because you too have too much to lose, remember, everyday of your life, in your own way, you are making a difference.

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